Undergraduate engineers get patent boost - Embedded.com

Undergraduate engineers get patent boost

London UK — Two of the five finalists in the STEP Best Electronic Engineer 2003 competition are applying for patents as a result of work carried during their placement at companies.

STEP Solutions:Electronic Engineering is a DTI-backed business support initiative which places undergraduates with companies to carry out electronic engineering projects.

The final is on 29th October and the five finalists are Thomas Mudryk and Andrew Tham, who are both students at the University of Newcastle-upon-Tyne, Lay Guan Tan who is studying at the University of Sheffield, Cambridge University student James Uren, and Martin Warby, an undergraduate at the Robert Gordon University in Aberdeen.

Working for AT Electronic Embedded Control Consultants (ATEEC), Mudryck developed a central heating control system reference design based on a Motorola MC68HC908LJ12, while Tham developed electronics for a new generation of ozone generators for Eclipse Technical Solutions. Tan undertook work on 'X-by-Wire' technology for Dependable Real Time Systems (DRTS), and Uren worked on a laser autofocus system for optics for biosciences company Genapta. Warby made it to the finals as a result of a project for Aros Developments that involved the development of a Bluetooth-based wireless data logger prototype.

Philip Donnelly, the managing director of STEP Enterprise, said, “This year we have seen many high calibre students and projects and whittling the finalists down to just five candidates was an incredibly difficulty task. In addition to demonstrable competence in the field of electronic engineering, the judges at the semi-final considered a variety of other criteria including task management, personal organisation, problem-solving capabilities, self-motivation and teamwork.”

“As a result of the work that they have done, at least two of thestudents have been instrumental in allowing their host companies to file newpatent applications,” added Donnelly.

STEP Solutions: Electronic Engineering (SS:EE) is a DTI-supported initiative that helps UK organisations secure tangible business benefits by using the high level of skills available from UK undergraduates studying electronic engineering and related disciplines. With grants available to qualifying SMEs, STEP Solutions: Electronic Engineering provides a highly cost-effective method for companies to undertake projects that may, otherwise, not get done, while providing the student with structured, real-life work experience.

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